"Spartacus" star Andy Whitfield died of non-Hodgkin's lymphoma on Sunday, Sep. 11. It was previously announced that the actor had been battling cancer.
Multiple news outlets reported Whitfield's death after receiving communication from the actor's representatives.
Whitfield's fans expressed their appreciation of him and their grief over his family's loss using social media outlets Twitter and Facebook.
On Twitter, fans said:
"On a day when Andy Whitfield passed away from lymphoma cancer I feel very humbled to receive an all clear from leukemia today." @KrisTheScript
"So sad Andy Whitfield lost his fight. Beautiful, inspiring man." @MsJaimeMurray
"In memory of Andy Whitfield: 'Say not in grief 'he is no more' but live in thankfulness that he was.' Hebrew proverb." @ausxip
"RIP Andy Whitfield. It's scary but you hear stories about cancer all the time. It's important to donate money 4 research." @esmeeworld
The Andy Whitfield (Spartacus) Facebook group also includes a constant stream of messages posted by Whitfield's fans. Since the initial announcement about Whitfield's disease, fans congregated at this group to post messages of support for the actor.
"I loved just stopping in and reading all the encouraging notes and comments sent to our Andy and his family. We are still in so much shock over this tragic turn of events," posted fan Patti M. on the page, echoing the sentiment of many fan page members.
Lucy Lawless also posted a blog message via her official fan club. Lawless, who plays Lucretia on "Spartacus," was a friend of former cast member Whitfield.
"He was a gentle man who never said a bad word about anyone...Andy's incandescent film presence made men want to be him and women want to marry him," Lawless wrote, concluding her message that Whitfield will be remembered above all as a good husband and father to wife Vashti and their two children.
The role of Spartacus was previously recast following Whitfield's leave of absence from the show, as well as "Spartacus" prequel season "Spartacus: Gods of the Arena." Australian actor Liam McIntyre will appear in "Spartacus: Vengeance."
Many fans have noted Whitfield's age. At 39, Whitfield's career was just starting to truly take off with the success of "Spartacus."
Whitfield had non-Hodgkin lymphoma (also known as non-Hodgkin's lymphoma), which can affect a patient at any age. This type of cancer is responsible for an estimated 66,360 diagnoses and 19,320 deaths in the United States in 2011.
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